Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Yes! Finally some common sense!

Anyone who knows me knows how much I complain about the content of news these days. And how most journalists seem to be a dumb as the people they report on. But last night two *YES, TWO* of the people interviewed agreed with my opinions. *unusual i know!* The bulletin complained that most accidents are caused by young people *odd, since last year they were bleating that it was people over 70 who caused them* and there was no incentives for them to keep a clean driving record. Maybe a discount on the cost of a driver's license? Yes! One of my pet peeves *and i have a few* is that it's been many years since I've had a speeding ticket or any kind of infringement. Where's my reward for keeping it that way??

In another bulletin *i was only partly listening* someone mentioned that schools don't teach life skills. And a big YES! from me. From the view of having worked in a Government department if you can do all the advanced algebra, calculus, chemistry, and other nonsense you want but you can't balance your own budget, reconcile your credit card, fill out a form, or check your meter box when the lights go out you're kind of behind the eight ball. We definitely need to spend more time teaching kids these basic skills. Though I confess that I don't know how to do the last one...

On a slightly related note, a lot of people claim of the unemployed that "you have plenty of money for your cigarettes and alcohol but you can't blah blah blah" in the media, the social ones particularly. But as a parent and from behind the counter of a Government department I can say that it's because they know how to pool their resources. Okay, some of them beg. But most of them have a lot of friends in the same boat so whoever is flush that day/week will buy the cigarettes and the booze and they share it around. I've noticed though that the same doesn't always go for food unless it's the odd takeaway meal for a friend.

Teen received some devastating news yesterday and it looks like the planned temporary stay will be extended. She was really excited and only had two weeks left of her planned stay before he came to get her and help her move back to live with him and his housemates. He opted out. Poor lass, and there's nothing I can do except annoy the hell out of her till we can't stand each other anymore. As a parent does. It's our job. Apparently I'm good at it.

Elder is keeping very mum lately about herself and her life. Which twigs the "mother" radar that there's something she doesn't want to tell me. Imagine. Fully grown adult who should have her life together too scared to tell mum something because she knows I will disapprove. Kids are odd little creatures. Yes, Elder, if you are reading this I probably know already and you're right, I don't approve. *insert evil grin here*

So to distract ourselves we go house hunting on the interwebs. Houses within your price range, and houses not. It's a lot of fun to look at the ones not in our price range. And I tell you, some of them you wonder what on earth it is you'd be paying rent for. More than $500 a week for a basic three bedroom. I'm glad of where we are at present. The accommodations are cramped but the locale is nice and MOTH has friends here. The neighbours are good too. I came home yesterday and my front yard has been mown. Which, normally, would be fantastic. But I've got the yard man coming this Saturday and since the agreed price is $60 I doubt he will make it any cheaper just because the front only requires an edging now.

All is relatively quiet on the Western Front so to speak. Another glowing report from R when they came home last Thursday. Movies are scheduled this Thursday with a proposed outing to see Goosebumps. Hopefully Niece will enjoy that. She really wants to see Star Wars but that one isn't screening during her hours. Then she chose Zoolander 2 but she hasn't seen the first one and I don't know if she'll get much enjoyment out of it. She'd miss all the satire and silly pop culture references so she might find it boring. I don't think she could say that about Goosebumps. Moose has seen it and recommended it.

So I had my birthday cruise all planned but the Fates intervened as usual. A flat tyre. Apparently I ran over a HUGE cable or conduit clamp. It drove a nail right into the tyre. Teen and I could hear a flub flub flub noise and we were nearly home. On one of the side/rural streets. She leaned out the window to see if she could see the tyre but no. Got into the garage and had a look. Yep. Big thing in the tyre and very audible hissing. *though MOTH insisted that it wasn't hissing as he couldn't hear it* And flat the next day. MOTH spent ages swapping out the flat and rotating tyres so he could take it down to get it repaired. So there went my cruise money. I'll have to sort out funds from another source if I want to go. I still need to get myself together and claim my free muffin and ice cream scoop. Problem with that is the ice cream scoop will have to come from a store several suburbs in the opposite direction to the source of the muffin. Sigh. There is a store in the same suburb but it's not redeemable there. And there's even a store in my local shopping centre but it's not reedeemable there either. That one wasn't opened when I joined up. Bugger... Luckily, I'm not walking it!

Thursday, February 04, 2016

Salted caramel. Who even thought of that?

So much for behaving myself. Shopping today and the supermarket was stocking Cadbury salted caramel again. I couldn't help myself. Three blocks, into the trolley.

Did the shopping on my own today. Well, Niece helped as such. She drove the trolley and that was okay. MOTH was joined us when we were finished. As he said, his timing was impeccable. Ready to head for the checkout, I checked my wallet. Oh! There's more money here in my wallet than I should have. I asked MOTH if I had given him the right money for the rent. He didn't know. And of course this time he did not get a receipt. So off he went to check what had been deposited while I unloaded and paid for the groceries. Aaaaand look at that. All the checkouts seem to be closed. Two of them were staffed by three people but each one had a sign on the end saying they were closed.

So one of the ladies asked if I was paying cash or card. Cash I said so she instructed one of the others to take me through. I put the trolley part way down the checkout *instead of the end* and started to unload. Next thing I know, some little old broad is busy unpacking her stuff directly behind mine. The conveyer is going and I'm left with about one foot of space to unpack my things. I'm trying to push some of hers back so I can unload mine, the checkout girl notices and turns the belt off, and the old lady notices and starts unloading my trolley and telling me to move it down. Dim old broad.

So the checkout girl finishes my stuff, rings through my change, and starts immediately on the old broad's order. And I'm left trying to load all my stuff into the trolley while the checkout girl is ringing through the next order. Shoot. And part of my order is still unbagged on the register near the scales. I grab that with one hand because I haven't even had time to put my change into my wallet. And I hope I have everything when I leave the area.

And I've just gone to make a cup of coffee and realise that the three litre bottle of milk didn't make it home with me. I don't know what else got left behind.

The weather has been stinking and I've been waaaay too hot and sweaty to concentrate on my assignments. My tutor sent a text today to find out how I'm going and now wants a draft early next week. Looks like I'm going to have to try to get some done. Great. Maybe I'll have to get the laptop to the shops or something again so I can work. It's way too hot at home with the humidity and lack of air conditioning.

R has brought Niece back home again after tonight's outing with a glowing report. That's three weeks in a row and I'm hoping it continues. She seems to like this one. I'm beginning to think the problem with the previous one was a lack of flexibility and she treated Niece the same way she treated her other clients who may require a more rigid framework. Who knows. But again, it's early days and I'm just hoping it continues. R did tell me though that last week, the chatter about boys was more general and included more talk about the girls and other activities. So, fingers crossed.

The programme Niece attends on Wednesdays sends through an email each week that details what they have covered. And when I go pick her up, I get a glowing report there too that tells me that she's participating well. They are currently looking at personal rights and scenarios and building their own guidelines. I am hoping it works. Apparently one of the other participants touched her on the back and she didn't like it. Good, say I, hopefully she will now get a clue about inappropriate touching.

She is "immunised" so to speak with an implant. Like everything else this is not 100% absolute protection but I'm hoping it's enough. If possible, I could see if I could coax her to take a more permanent solution however even if she did, the doctors would likely only offer to minimal. And then we would have to deal with the usual cycle. Which we don't have to deal with using the implant. Ma would prefer a total solution but I've mentioned that I think the only option they would give would be the minimum.

The dog and the cat thing is annoying the hell out of me the last couple of days. The dog has taken to barking loudly and often each time she sees the cat. If she just shut up it wouldn't be such an annoyance. I'm waiting for the cat to develop diarrhoea from stress. They went through a spell where they would just look at each other but yeah, the last couple of days, it's all bark. Getting just a little p'd off with it.

Birthday month! Bring it I say! Well, I'm feeling my age right about now. So tired and worn out. But. Roll on the freebies. The biggest problem is that even though they're free, I can't afford them. Makes sense, doesn't it. But I get a free small scoop from Baskin & Robbins. A free muffin from Muffin Break. And a free river cruise with Kookaburra Queen river cruises. I really want all three but the last is expensive for three of us even though my ticket is complementary. I'm really going to have to work on that one....